When a different firm is engaged by a company to carry out services or deliver goods for the latter within a specific time frame, it falls within the definition of outsourcing. Since outsourcing saves time, reduces cost, and maximizes profit, many firms opt for the same.
Game development has grown by leaps and bounds since the 1970s when the commercialization of the first video game happened. The business of game development demands the involvement of multiple personnel. Over and above the producer and the publisher, there is a crucial need to put together a skilled team of developers. They comprise experts like designers, artists, programmers, sound engineers, and the testing crew. They should work together and their contributions are decisive.
Game development companies offering various services such as animation and art development are the most sought-after commodities in the world of gaming at this point in time. While outsourcing game development to emerging economies was done earlier with the sole intention of reducing cost, a new reality after the onset of the pandemic is forcing the gaming industry to look at outsourcing from a new perspective.
The post Covid-19 world is still bringing numerous surprises like lockdowns, quarantines, travel and logistical restrictions to the fore, postponing the release of new game titles. Amidst all these hurdles the popularity of online gaming has skyrocketed feeding the demand for skilled professionals in developing countries spurring on the growth of outsourcing game development utilizing remote work culture.
There are complex security and ethical concerns lurking behind the so-called straightforward process of outsourcing game development. Factors like unwavering focus, outstanding work ethics, and a culture of confidentiality are major prerequisites for a company receiving outsourced game development assignments. Some of them are examined here. Read on to get an idea about the risks involved.
From ideas of the game to minute details like the look of characters comes under trade secrets in the gaming industry. The definition of trade secrets encompasses those details which have economic values and should ideally remain hidden from the public. The long shadow of corporate espionage can easily leak out such trade secrets in those outsourcing destinations incapacitated by inefficient state institutions. Countries like China are accused of widespread trade secret theft by advanced economies of the west from which game development is outsourced.
Game development outsourcing will make the real producer experience a lack of control over intellectual property and the product itself. This will generate worries about the compromise of codes and data breaches. In most cases, such agonies are exaggerated. Many game development firms like Juego Studios stick to professionalism. They will go to any length to uphold the integrity of the client’s intellectual property rights. Moreover, the contracts regarding outsourcing between companies for game development are stringent and have no loopholes to discourage duplicity.
Most of the firms to which the game development is outsourced have less than an ideal level of protection against cybersecurity threats. Their security policies often lack clarity and have outdated or no certifications when it comes to protecting information security. But there are game development companies like Juego Studios that have information security protection qualities on par with ISO standards. Companies with such high standards undergo rigorous external audits, evaluation of existing technologies, and probable risk assessment. The countries to which game development is outsourced should make sure the existence of legal frameworks similar to GDPR or General Data Protection Regulation of the European Union as well.
Game developers in developing countries like India can be hired at a bargain compared to western countries. The wrongly assumed reason behind low cost is the low quality of finished work. But, in reality, a combination of factors such as low cost of living, inadequate social security framework, evolving labor laws, etc makes the payroll cheaper in destination countries, making wages cheaper. Ideally, there should be no ethical dilemma involved but low wages in offshore destinations are often cited.
One of the principal reasons why gaming companies outsource game development to offshore destinations is to derive quality output without spending too much. Starting development centers in the USA or Europe will escalate the production cost. This reason coupled with the scarcity of engineers and the high social security cost makes offshoring a better option than doing things locally. Most often, the jobless local talent is provided as the main consequence due to the flight of good jobs to offshore destinations. In reality, the job loss is minuscule and the advantages are innumerable.
At times game development outsourcing becomes the victim of vicious politics and unscrupulous policies by governments. Donald Trump chastising companies in the United States for outsourcing the jobs of the American middle class to India and China is the latest example. Such patriotic propaganda can confuse the companies which outsource. They may reverse the contract or incur losses consequently.
Those companies which genuinely outsource game development to popular offshore game development destinations such as India, the Philippines, and Argentina are wrongly bracketed with companies that evade taxation deliberately. The latter unethically open shell companies in tiny, unheard islands like Cayman to undervalue their shares and avoid capital gains tax. This is to boost their balance sheet without any morals. Stringent tax laws identifying and penalizing tax havens countries can help differentiate genuine, tax compliant companies offshoring to real outsourcing destinations from shell firms.
Collaborating with an ideal offshore game development company like Juego Studios can add immense value. Juego Studios have created popular games like Adventure Quest Battle Gems, Pool Game, Super Club Soccer, and Story Of Ancients. They have an experienced team providing comprehensive support from the game design stage to the support and maintenance stage. Contact Juego Studios for outsourcing game development.
From the above arguments, it is very clear that game development outsourcing is a product of its time and it is here to stay for a long time. Existing security issues and ethical problems are being addressed. New ones are being anticipated as the offshore game development scene evolves further in a globalized, post pandemic world.